As of about 11:05 central this morning, Kansas City became a city without peer when Google announced that they were bringing their ultra high-speed fiber-optic broadband service to Kansas City, Missouri. Today’s announcement followed the announcement earlier in the spring that Kansas City, Kansas had won the honor of being the very first site selected for the new service, and Google said then that they were just getting started. Today, just two short months later, they followed through on that promise by announcing that they were bringing the service to Kansas City, Missouri as well.
Of course, they had good partners to work with. Once it was known that KCK would be the first place to get ultra high-speed internet, the newly-elected James administration (the new Mayor was sworn in on May first) and City Councilwoman and now Mayor Pro Tem Cindy Circo joined with KCP&L and started wooing Google into expanding here as well.
And speaking of KCP&L, they are pretty forward-thinking for a utility company. They have embraced the notion of carbon offsets and partnered with the Sierra Club to pioneer an offset program. They have also developed smart grid technologies around a first-of-it’s-kind Green Impact Zone in inner-city KC, and they have introduced all-electric vehicles into their fleet.
As part of the agreement, KCP&L offered Google access to their polls and infrastructure, including existing fiber-optic networks. By allowing Google access to existing infrastructure, service can be delivered faster and cheaper than building a network from scratch.
Mayor Sly James, Rep. Emanuel Cleaver II and Mike Chesser, CEO of KCP&L
Milo Medin of Google and Mayor Pro Tem Cindy Circo
Kansas City is already a great place for entrepreneurship, thanks to the Kauffman Foundation, and we are already a center of innovation in science and research, thanks to Midwest Research Institute, the Stowers Institute and two major research universities in the heart of the city.
We have a lot to offer, not just a company like Google but all of the businesses that will be drawn here because of the access to ultra high-speed broadband — including one of the best community college systems in the country that can train the workers for those high-tech businesses that will follow the fastest internet in the world to Kansas City, where we already perfected Jazz, the Blues and Barbecue.